Regensburg, the town of emperors and kings, offers impressive perspectives of around 2,000 years of history. The centre has over 1,500 listed buildings; of these, 984 form the 'Old Town with Stadtamhof' ensemble, which became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2006.
The only example of French Gothic cathedral architecture east of the Rhine, Regensburg Cathedral has a wealth of medieval stained glass that is unparalleled in Germany. However, it is just one of many architectural monuments that make Regensburg in Bavaria the best-preserved medieval city in Germany. Other fascinating places to visit include the Cathedral Treasury Museum, Krauterermarkt square with the Collegiate Church of St. John, the former Cathedral deanery, the squares Dachauplatz, Neupfarrplatz, Alter Kornmarkt, Kohlenmarkt, Rathausplatz and Haidplatz, Porta Praetoria and the patrician towers. Then there is the Stone Bridge, which connects the old town to the Amhof district on the other side of the Danube. This was regarded as the eighth wonder of the world on its completion in 1146 and is Germany's oldest arched stone bridge with some sections still in their original state. For a fantastic insight into the buildings and history of the city, go to the interactive exhibition at the World Heritage Visitor Centre in the former salt storehouse (Salzstadel) at the Stone Bridge, which vividly tells the story of Regensburg's journey from a free imperial city to UNESCO World Heritage site. Events such as the Festival of Early Music in June, which features atmospheric concerts in historical venues, and the Thurn & Taxis Palace Theatre Festival in July are excellent opportunities to soak up the flair and ambience of the city. And the fact that Regensburg has the highest concentration of bars in Germany will ensure your enthusiasm is not dampened in any way!
World Heritage Visitor Centre at the Salzstadel:
open daily 10am to 7pm, free admission
'Regensburg's World Heritage' guided tour: November to March 1pm daily, April to October 4.30pm daily
'Cathedral of St. Peter' guided tour: May to October: Monday to Friday 10am and 2pm; Sundays and public holidays: 2pm; November to April: 2pm daily
The Regensburg Domspatzen, one of the oldest and most famous boys' choirs in the world, perform every Sunday during High Mass at 10am (except during holidays), and at cathedral concerts during the festive season.
6 to 9 June 2014: Festival of Early Music
July 2014: Thurn & Taxis Palace Theatre Festival
Further information: Regensburg Tourist Information www.regensburg.de